(UPDATED 5:03 pm w/ comments from Reichert camp)
Congressman Dave Reichert, the three-term Republican incumbent representing Washington’s 8th District, won the endorsement from the League of Conservation Voters today — a coup for his re-election campaign.
In its endorsement, the league praised Reichert for “a solid LCV lifetime environmental score of 62%,” and called Reichert’s support in 2009 of the House’s American Clean Energy and Security Act “crucial.”
This from a press release issued by the LCV today:
“We are proud to endorse Congressman Reichert for re-election because he supports policies that will not only build a clean energy economy that gets Washington’s workers back on the job, but will also reduce our dependence on foreign oil and curb harmful pollution,” said LCV Action Fund President Gene Karpinski.
Reichert’s past pro-environmental stances, which include crossing party lines to vote with Democrats, largely have helped to earn him a moderate label, balancing his more conservative stances on fiscal and social issues.
Campaign spokesman Darren Littell said Reichert is “honored” to receive the endorsement. “He believes future generations should grow up being surrounded by the kind of striking natural beauty he has experienced as a life-long Washington State resident,” Littell said.
The endorsement from the mainstream environmental advocacy group is a blow to Reichert critics, who for months have been hammering away at statements he made earlier this year to a group of Republicans. Reichert described his environmental votes as “chess pieces” used strategically to help him hold onto his seat in his fickle swing district. A leaked audio recording of the speech was first reported in May on the left-leaning blog, HorsesAss.org.
The campaign for Reichert’s Democratic challenger, Suzan DelBene, was quick to criticize the LCV’s endorsement today, issuing a statement that, in part, said: “The 8th Congressional District deserves better than a cynical politician with a mediocre environmental record.”